Taj Mahal

The Taj Mahal is a tomb made of white marble. It is on the right bank of the Yamuna River in the Indian district of Agra, which is in the state of Uttar Pradesh. In 1983, UNESCO put it on its list of World Heritage Sites. Which Mughal Emperor built the Taj Mahal? The Taj Mahal was built by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan as a memorial to his wife, Mumtaz Mahal, who died in 1631.

Taj Mahal History and Facts

The Taj Mahal complex took 22 years to create, beginning in 1632. In the middle, there is a square garden space surrounded by two smaller, oblong parts. One of the smaller parts is where the mausoleum is, and the other is where the entrance gateway is. The mausoleum is made of white marble with a semiprecious stone inlay.

On either side of it are two buildings made of red sandstone. On one side, there is a mosque, and on the other, there is another building that looks the same. It stands on a marble base, and each corner has a minaret. It has four faces that are all the same. Each one has a large arch in the middle that is 108 feet (33 meters) tall and is topped by a double dome with a bulbous shape and four dome-shaped kiosks.

The inside of the Taj Mahal is decorated with beautiful stonework. The marble tombs are in the middle of an eight-sided room. It is surrounded by sarcophagi and a marble screen with holes in it. The Taj Mahal is regarded as one of the most beautiful structures in the world.

Advertisements

Since the late 1990s, steps have been taken to reduce the damage caused by air pollution to the building’s exterior. The Taj Mahal is the most well-known example of Mughal architecture, which combines Indian, Persian, and Islamic styles. Its proportions are well-balanced, and its decorative parts fit together well.

Beautiful gardens, a museum, and two identical mosques on either side of the mausoleum are some of the other things to see. The Taj Mahal is one of the most beautiful architectural works in the world. It is also one of the most well-known landmarks, bringing in millions of tourists every year.

Important Facts of Taj Mahal

The complex was designed by a number of architects at the time. Most likely, Ustad Ahmad Lahawri was the person who came up with the idea for the project. He was a Persian-Indian Indian. The main parts of the compound are the entrance gate, garden, mosque, jawab (literally, “answer”), a building that looks like the mosque, and the mausoleum. The four minarets are also important.

Based on Mughal building practices, all of these were thought of and built as one living thing. This meant that nothing else could be changed or added. The building started around 1632, and it took almost 20,000 people to do the work. Workers were brought in from India, Persia, the Ottoman Empire, and Europe to finish the mausoleum by 1638 or 1639.

Advertisements

Taj Mahal History

The side buildings were finished by 1643, and decorating took place until at least 1647. The 42-acre (17-hectare) complex took 22 years to build from start to finish. The story goes that Shah Jahan wanted to build another mausoleum on the other side of the river to put his own bones in.

It was supposed to be made of black marble, and a bridge was supposed to connect it to the Taj Mahal. He was ousted by his son Aurangzeb in 1658 and imprisoned in Agra Fort for the rest of his life.

Information About Taj Mahal

The 23-foot-tall (7-meter-tall) mausoleum is made of white marble and reflects different colors depending on how strong the sun or moonlight is. It has four sides that look almost the same. Each one has a large arch in the middle that is 108 feet (33 meters) high and smaller arches in the corners that are chamfered.

The central dome is surrounded by four smaller domes. At its highest point, the central dome is 240 feet (73 meters) tall. Inside the main dome, the acoustics force a single flute note to resonate five times. The interior of the mausoleum is built around an octagonal marble chamber with low-relief decorations and pietra dura, which are semiprecious stones.

Advertisements

There are the tombs of Mumtaz Mahal and Shah Jahan. The fake tombs are surrounded by a filigree marble curtain that was carved by a master. The real sarcophagi are at garden level, under the graves. At each corner of the square plinth, an elegant minaret stands apart from the main building in a smooth way.

What is Taj Mahal

Two symmetrically identical houses flank the mausoleum near the garden’s northern and northeastern ends, respectively. The mosque, which faces east, and the jawab, which faces west, look good together. They are made of red Sikri sandstone and have marble-necked domes and architraves, which contrast in color and texture with the white marble of the mausoleum.

The garden was made in the style of the Mughals. Long waterways or pools surround a square with walking paths, fountains, and beautiful trees. It is surrounded by the walls and buildings of the complex. It makes the entrance to the tomb look dramatic. It shows up in the pools in the middle of the garden.

At the south end of the complex, there is a big red sandstone entrance with a two-story-high arch that is cut out in the middle. Inlaid into the white marble paneling around the arch are black words from the Quran and pictures of flowers. Two pairs of lesser arches flank the main arch.

Advertisements

Both the north and south sides of the gateway are decorated with rows of white chattris, or cupola-like structures. 11 on each side, with thin, ornate minarets that reach 98 feet in height (30 meters). There are eight-sided towers with larger spires on top of each of the four corners.

Pietra dura and Arabic calligraphy are two prominent ornamental elements found throughout the building. Pietra dura (Italian: “hard stone”) is a Mughal technique that involves the inlay of semiprecious stones of various colors. Geometric and floral designs with a lot of formality use lapis lazuli, jade, crystal, turquoise, and amethyst.

The colors help to balance out the white Makrana marble’s magnificent vastness. Many portions of the Taj Mahal have Quranic verses written in calligraphy. The project was led by Amanat Khan al-Shirazi. He was a key figure in the history of Islamic art. One of the inscriptions on the sandstone entryway, “Daybreak” (89:28–30), welcomes the faithful to enter paradise.

The tall arched doors to the mausoleum itself are surrounded by calligraphy. The letters get bigger the higher they are and the farther away they are from the viewer. From the terrace’s vantage point, it ensures a consistent appearance.

Advertisements

What is Taj Mahal Famous For

The Taj Mahal has been neglected and decaying for generations. At the beginning of the 20th century, Lord Curzon oversaw a full restoration. At the time, he was the British Viceroy of India. Recently, air pollution from foundries and other nearby businesses, as well as car exhaust, has hurt the mausoleum, especially its marble facade.

Ads Infolinks

Several things have been done to make the monument less dangerous. Some foundries are being shut down, and at others, pollution-control technology is being put in place. The development of a parkland buffer zone around the complex, as well as the prohibition of automobile traffic in the area.

In 1998, a project to repair and learn more about the Taj Mahal began. But only a small amount of work has been done to fix up the area around the monument. The Taj Mahal has been affected by India’s political turmoil on several occasions. Between 1984 and 2004, night viewing was prohibited.

It had been feared that Sikh militants might attack the monument. Furthermore, it has become increasingly recognized as an Indian cultural emblem. Some Hindu nationalist parties have attempted to downplay the significance of Muslim influence on the Taj Mahal’s origins and construction.

Advertisements

Author: Amitava Ray
I'm a photographer (1979) and a blogger (2006). My future photography and blogging endeavors are contingent on the success of Whizzed Net.